One of the most common questions about NFC business cards is security. Is it secure? Is it easy and convenient to share is another question? What information do you store in your digital card and ensure that it is always protected? Not only secure, but it conveys information in a format that looks professional. NFC business cards are popular nowadays. It is used as an embedded label, and you have to tap it from your smartphone.
Let’s discuss this in more detail. What is an NFC business card? How safe are and what are the technical loopholes of NFC business cards.
What is an NFC business card?
NFC is popular everywhere these days, especially for smartphone users. Embedded in the business card is a tiny microchip. When it’s touched with a smartphone, the chip asks the smartphone to do something. Something you have programmed it to do. Perhaps download your product catalogues, sales presentation, play video, load web pages, URL links, apps, social media, save your contact details – the possibilities are endless. To create NFC business cards some basic requirements, must be fulfilled.
How safe are NFC business cards?
By adding NFC technology to your business cards, you can link digital information to a physical item. When you tap your phone, your business card can initiate an innovative digital experience that is not possible with traditional business cards. You can effortlessly share your contact information, website links, LinkedIn profile, and other social media profiles. When the NFC chip is embedded in your card, unlike the QR code that is printed on the business card, it will not disturb the design of the card. In addition, it enhances the professional look.
An NFC business card may look similar to a regular card, but it is way more modern and innovatively enhanced. An additional benefit is that the chip is rewritable. QR codes will do not allow rewriting and so can be printed once, but this is not the case with NFC. You can change the NFC content anytime, and the best way to do it is by yourself as much as possible. For example, you can always change the link to your actual promotional video on YouTube.
Just Link your NFC-enabled business card with google maps, and it is doable only by tapping the card on the phone. Soon you get directions to your business. Again, please don’t waste your time thinking about security. The NFC technology will not let you down.
If you compare cards with QR then, vCards are only text files and therefore malware free. At the same time, the QR Codes are problematic since you need to download a special app. You need to hold the business card with one hand and the phone with your other hand to scan it, also you need to be online. With an NFC business card, all you need to do is to tap the card on the phone’s back and you’re done with the transaction. Sound good.
With the accumulating number of NFC-enabled phones, there will be a boom shortly. It’s a very nice way to impress and to be remembered. NFC business cards are the future of business cards. The level of security is way more than traditional business cards. Still, you should be cautious. You already know that l HTTP is a type of protocol, in the same way, NFC is also a kind of protocol. You must take in a malicious program to have something terrible happen.
Now let’s see some advantages of adding NFC to a business card that enhances security:
- You can find NFC tags on Amazon or other platforms. Make sure you have checked the memory of the information(data) because the storage capacity of the NFC tag is tiny in size. It could be a few bytes!
- Most of the current state cell phones support NFC chips.
- NFC tools are very popular for reading and writing NFC chips. There are lots of options for NFC tools. You can choose one for your needs.
NFC business card Security Features:
As for the system, I don’t think the medium is relevant, only the systems that use the medium and they will depend on the secure design, architecture, and implementation like any other technology. People have been talking about this issue for some time from a security perspective and awareness is increasing.
There are different types of NFC technologies used in NFC business cards and let’s take a look at some:
NFC-1: It is referred to as NFC Interface and Protocol, which is a ‘real’ standard co-published as ISO 18092 and ECMA-340. It uses a half-duplex radio protocol to transfer data at medium bitrates of 100 to 800 kilobytes per second. At short distances, it is less than 10cm between two parts. The first one is the initiator and the second one is the target. This NFCIP protocol is mostly compatible with ISO 14443, which has been used for similar purposes over a longer time.
NDEF: The second is NFC Data Exchange format, which is a compact binary data storage and message serialization format. It is a widely used technology accepted by NFC card-making companies.
RTD: The third one is NFC Record Type Definition, a specification format for NDEF messages.
These are special types of data storage units in NFC. NFC Tag types 1 through 4, define radio protocol and logical message storage particulars for several passive NFC Tags.
We would like to share two aspects here that are important to note: The first one is the NFC Forum, which specifies nothing at all that would be classified as a “security feature”, except for lock bits.
In the business card use case, you write an NDEF message to the card that essentially says: hey I’m a business card, this is my name, this is my phone number, and stuff like that. Other NDEF message types are a little hard to understand, I know technical stuff is hard to get but we are trying to explain each term in a simple manner.
In NDEF, a call request contains a phone number and the expected semantics. Again, no security properties are executed or claimed.
Now let’s discuss the main functional points of NFC business cards:
NFC works within a very small radius, A few inches barely and so it makes it hard to hack through an unknown location. It is only accessible when someone stands very close to the business cards. Proximity allows us to keep contact sharing secure.
2. User Initiation
The user must initiate the process closer to their smartphone and NFC business cards to share their contact details.
How to avoid the security loopholes in NFC business cards?
- When not in use, it is recommended to disable your NFC business cards.
- Don’t open or accept the NFC from an unauthorized external source, or unknown people.
- When your Bluetooth is open it is fine. When your Wi-Fi is open, connecting again is not a big issue, but when you leave NFC enabled then can be a bit dangerous.
- NFC is just another medium such as wires, Wi-Fi, microwave, etc. It will have extra security features, most professionals prefer to deploy its safe usage whether it is for payments, contact sharing, or any other purpose.
- Being an unseen medium perhaps has its risks in terms of awareness.
For consumers and businesses, adopting NFC business cards is an opportunity. No long and complicated processes, just tap your smartphone to initiate the contact sharing. Every technology has some disadvantages and drawbacks, don’t just stop using it because of them. The technology of NFC-based business cards is growing and improving over time. In the foreseeable future, you will see the next level of user experience.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Are NFC business cards safe to use?
Contactless technology is the future of business cards. To hack into NFC technology is a challenge for most hackers.
Is NFC technology encrypted?
NFC technology allows users to exchange their data by encryption. In addition, the communication distance is very minimal, and it is very tough to hack over a long distance.